In August 2016 the Northeast Board of Cooperative Education Services (Northeast BOCES) and the East Central BOCES decided to join forces in order to amplify their purchasing power for broadband services for over 30 school districts combined. With the support of EducationSuperHighway, the new consortium was able to develop a single RFP (Form 470) and received eight bids in response. The responses were significantly more cost-effective than any previous bids.
Before the upgrade, the districts in the Northeast and EC BOCES were paying an average of $30 per Mbps to receive between 20 and 100 Mbps of Internet access. Now, nearly every school district will be getting 1 Gbps of Internet access for less than $1 per Mbps. That’s 10-50 times greater bandwidth for about 3% of the cost.
Check out this video to see the impact of low cost broadband for school districts:
Lewis Palmer School District
Lewis-Palmer School District is an 8-school district just north of Colorado Springs with ~6,300 students. The district was committed to a 2:1 ratio of devices to students and was moving toward a more media-rich curriculum. In order to support their digital learning goals, Lewis-Palmer needed additional bandwidth, but cost was a significant barrier to upgrading.
Their tech director leveraged data transparency in the Compare and Connect K12 tool to get more bandwidth at a more affordable cost. As a result this year, the district will be saving $1K per month and getting double the bandwidth compared to the previous year.